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ERIC Number: ED567139
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 8
The Culture of Experiential Community Based Learning: Developing Cultural Awareness in Pre-Service Teachers
Droppert, Alida J.
Bulgarian Comparative Education Society, Paper presented at the Annual International Conference of the Bulgarian Comparative Education Society (11th, Plovdiv, Bulgaria, May 14-17, 2013)
This paper describes the culture of experiential community based learning at Central College, a rural liberal arts college in Midwestern, USA. Pre-service teachers use experiential community based learning to reflect on their personal growth in understanding the needs of diverse learners. Reflections demonstrate how the program contributes to the development of cultural awareness. There is a culture of civic engagement as stated in the college strategic plan and community goals. The program is coordinated through the Center for Community Based Learning (CCBL) which acts as a liaison with not-for-profit organizations in Des Moines and other at risk locations in Iowa. Students are placed with not-for-profit organizations to give support to low income families, refugees, the homeless, immigrants; teaching English, or working with at risk children and young adults in alternative high schools and shelters. The paper presents research findings regarding the impact on college students of experiential learning. The pre-service teachers describe the challenges and learning outcomes from their out of class experiences. The study participants, in the human relations education course have to commit to fifteen hours of experiential community service. The program develops dispositions and skills for pre-service teachers to understand multicultural education in preparation for teaching in increasingly diverse classrooms. The paper presents data collated from the students' reflections, journals, research papers and in class discussions. The pre-service teachers describe the impact of working with multicultural groups to include: increased cultural awareness, a greater understanding of learner differences, and the development of empathy for the needs of diverse communities. [For complete volume, see ED567118.]
Bulgarian Comparative Education Society. Blvd Shipchenski prohod 69 A, 1574 Sofia, Bulgaria. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Iowa; Iowa (Des Moines)